Canada is a global leader in pea production, and producers have seen an increase in demand with the constant creation of new products.
With more people changing to plant-based diets, the rise is expected to continue.
Around 850,000 Canadians are vegan, and 2.3 million are vegetarian according to Statista.
Meal kit company Chef’s Plate has recently paired with Meatless Farms to provide more plant-based options for Canadians.
Meatless Farms uses peas out of Western Canada to create their meatless protein.
“The peas are grown in Western Canada, they’re partially finished here in Calgary, then shipped to our production facilities where they’re made into, you know, burger, made into chicken,” said Darcy Peters, Meatless Farms Vice President of Sales.
The plant-based market is seeing steady growth every year for products made from peas, such as starch and protein.
Pea production in Canada has also gone up nearly 30 per cent since 2018.
Pulse Canada vice-president of market innovation, Julianne Curran said, “We’re seeing across the board a lot of new launches but also the forecasted growth for those ingredients is also quite high for the future.”
Consumer Margaret Henderson took 20 years to fully transition to a vegan diet. She said she has noticed more options becoming available for people who follow plant-based diets.
“It’s just really good to see more and more things coming available that are there for vegans!”
Peters says they believe the demand for plant-based foods will continue to grow, since the numbers are already trending that way.
“We feel that this is a great opportunity to bring our products to another branch of consumers out there that have been un-served or under-served and to let people experiment,” said Peters.
If the trend continues, it should be a growing market for pulse crop producers on the Prairies.